Animals hold a huge part of Miranda Lambert's heart; the country star shows her love for her four-legged friends by taking in strays, spreading awareness and making financial contributions. Recently, her MuttNation Foundation donated a whopping $175,000 to animal shelters across the nation.

The Mutts Across America: 50 States / 50 Shelters initiative is an annual program that provides funds and support to animal shelters in every single state. In January, MuttNation Foundation gave a minimum of $3,000 to various shelters across the United States, thanks to funds raised in 2015.

The MuttNation Foundation has been around for three years, and it continues to make a huge impact in raising awareness for animal shelters.

“When an animal finds a forever home, it’s not just life-changing for the animal, but for the family that gets to receive the unconditional love that animals give,” Lambert says in a press release. “It means so much to me to be a part of that process.”

How are the recipients of MuttNation's donations selected? Lots and lots of research. For the past three years, MuttNation Foundation has researched shelters throughout the nation to find the most deserving recipients. Included in the criteria are: high adoption per intake rate, volunteerism, fiscal responsibility, advocating spay and neuter programs and a solid presence in the community.

“As the recipient for the state of Arkansas, we are deeply humbled and enormously grateful for your support,” a representative of the state's Bella Vista Animal Shelter says in a press release. “Our ‘cold noses and warm hearts’ give the MuttNation Foundation their sincere thanks.”

Lambert, along with her mother and MuttNation co-founder Bev, personally ensure that every single penny goes toward improving the lives of innocent animals.

“We feel so privileged to be able to continue supporting these shelters that truly stand out,” Lambert's mom says. “We salute all of the individuals who follow their passion to help animals and defend those who cannot defend themselves.”

When she's not rescuing puppies, kittens and other animals, Lambert is focusing on her craft: country music. She's currently prepping for her 2016 Keeper of the Flame Tour, which includes Kip Moore and the Brothers Osborne.

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